Food Outreach’s mission is to provide nutritional support and enhance the quality of life of men, women, and children living with HIV or cancer. We are the only organization providing these services in our region. Our clients live in 150 Missouri and Illinois zip codes and range in age from 19 to 96 years – many of whom live with multiple secondary illnesses in addition to their primary diagnosis. The goals of nutrition therapy are to accomplish the following: prevent or reverse nutrient deficiencies; preserve lean body mass; help patients better tolerate treatments; minimize nutrition related side effects and complications; maintain strength and energy; protect immune function, decreasing the risk of infection; aid in recovery and healing; and maximize quality of life.
Our comprehensive program includes our Scratch-Prepared Meals, Fresh Fruits and Vegetables and Shelf-Stable Grocery Program designed by our on-staff Chef and Registered Dietitian, individualized dietetic counseling, nutrition and cooking education classes, a weekly congregate three-course meal, nutrition supplements, and meal home delivery to homebound clients. Our programs provide each client with two nutritious meals per day (28 meals/biweekly; 62 meals, monthly) throughout enrollment, combined with nutrition counseling and monitoring by our Registered Dietitian.
To be eligible for our services, an individual must have proof of diagnosis and meet income guidelines, i.e., live at or below 300% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) or $43,740 annual income for an individual. The majority (82%) of the people we serve live below 100% of the FPL, or $14,580 annual income for an individual. All of our services are provided at no charge to clients, with the primary objective to provide nutritional interventions so clients can receive nutrition and education for the management of their disease and to provide them the opportunity to use their limited resources for housing, utilities, and other necessities.